From the Editors
Prof. Anna Ujwary-Gil, Editor-in-Chief, Institute of Economics, Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw, Poland
Prof. Natalia R. Potoczek, Managing Director, Institute of Economics, Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw, Poland
In presenting this issue entitled Evolving Enterprise Competences in Response to Changes in the Environment, we want to focus your attention on organizational competence in the context of its competitiveness in the market. The competitive advantage of a modern organization results from competences that enable the adaptation of market mechanisms, internal coordination of activities and resources, consistent building of human potential and development of business capabilities. Organizations' competences in creating innovation, using advanced information and communication technologies (ICT), and building human capital are particularly strongly articulated today.
Organizations in the 20th century were oriented towards creating a sustainable competitive advantage based on key competences that ensured a stable growth in market share. Contemporary 21st-century organizations have understood that gaining a competitive advantage results from competences that allow them to succeed in new fields and quickly reconfigure business models. Every company should know the competences that will enable it to use opportunities, differentiate itself from other market players and implement its own development strategies. The diverse research issues in the collected articles allow you to build and assess a broad perspective of the opportunities that companies use in the market and the various competence gaps that deprive them of these opportunities.
The first article by Mirna Leko Šimić, Antun Biloš, and Josipa Mijoč presents empirical evidence on the relationship between the use of e-business tools and the export efficiency of Croatian companies. The authors set themselves the goal of determining the level of implementation of e-business tools in Croatian exporting companies and examining their impact on export results. In the analysis of the level of implementation of e-business tools, the OECD e-commerce maturity model was used, which measures several aspects of ICT readiness and the intensity of websites and e-commerce in exporting companies. Researchers were able to determine that the implementation of e-business tools in Croatian companies requires improvement, especially in market research, communication, and online sales. An interesting observation is the indication of a higher level of e-business advancement in companies oriented on geographically and culturally distant markets (markets outside the EU) in relation to companies exporting mainly to the regional and EU markets. The authors are convinced that the research results can serve as a starting point for making comparative analyzes in comparison with similar economies in terms of market maturity and that this knowledge-building could significantly contribute to developing the competence of exporting enterprises in the field of e-business development.
The article by Aleksander Jakimowicz and Daniel Rzeczkowski refers to the issues of innovation in industrial processing enterprises. The authors analyzed the propensity of enterprises to implement innovation in the years 2012 - 2014 following the negative shock of the global financial crisis in the years 2008-2010. As a result of the conducted research, a relatively low propensity for innovation, and caution in undertaking it, was found. At the same time, a growing tendency to take up activities in the field of eco-innovation and the feeling of a slow reduction in the impact of innovation barriers have been noticed. Appropriate stimulation of the environment and financial support in the field of eco-innovation are examples of overcoming the negative effects of an external shock in the form of psychological barriers and excessive caution in implementing innovation. The authors note that the main value of the article is its innovative and strictly empirical approach to the problems of innovation. The unique and comprehensive analysis of the relationships between sixty-three variables describing the innovation activity of enterprises can become a potential benchmark for similar analyses in the future.
The article by Victoria Konovalenko Slettli addresses the problems of education in the field of transformational entrepreneurship, with a particular emphasis on adults. The author shares the view that transformational entrepreneurship is expressed in the capacity and intended action for change in the life of the entrepreneur and organization, which, in turn, contributes to social change and is characterized by the emergence of a new qualitative dimension of possibilities. The article is based on a pilot study of the implementation of the Transformative Learning Circles (TLC) model in Scandinavian countries, which was developed by the Nordic Network for Adult Learning. The study significantly fits into the development of knowledge about entrepreneurship learning. Key factors affecting entrepreneurship learning have been linked to specific learning processes. In addition, the way of combining these factors in one learning model is illustrated to increase the learning effect of transformational entrepreneurship, which today can be classified as key competences contributing to the development of an enterprise.
The next two articles refer directly to the functioning of people in the organization and constitute an important voice in the discussion on the key competences of the organization in the field of building human capital and gaining a competitive advantage. The article by Ambreen Sarwar, Muhammad Ibrahim Abdullah, Muddassar Sarfraz, and Muhammad Kashif Imran presents research on employees working in both public and private sector banks in Pakistan. It proves the relationship between ostracism, stress, and the self-efficacy of employees. As a result of the conducted research, the authors conclude that the self-efficacy of employees, or belief in their own effectiveness, reduces the perception of stress and mitigates the negative effects of ostracism. The study shows that people with a higher sense of self-efficacy would be less affected by the negative effects of stress and ostracism. Although a certain level of stress is considered essential for efficient work, high-stress levels are harmful. Highly efficacious people are less prone to stress in the face of mistreatment; they focus more on their capabilities than on the behavior of others. Perhaps the development of employee's efficacy should be included in the key competences of the organization, especially since the authors recognized self-efficacy as one of the dimensions of psychological capital, along with hope, optimism, and resilience of employees. The authors postulate to examine the impact of these dimensions on the relationship between stress and ostracism or other forms of ill-treatment in the workplace.
The latest article by Michał Ujm and Tomasz Ingram presents research in which the main attention was focused on the impact of human resource management practices on individual employee involvement. Task uncertainty was treated as a moderating variable in the research, which was conducted among members of international teams who are recruiting employees. The authors analyzed the collected material from the perspective of the theory of abilities, motivation, and opportunities (Ability-Motivation-Opportunity theory - AMO). As a result, they verified two research hypotheses and received support for the first hypothesis which proved that AMO practices affect the organizational commitment of employees. The second hypothesis was verified negatively. It has been proven that skills-only human resource management practices do not increase employee involvement. The loyalty of employees who are aware of their competences is not high unless they are properly motivated. The conducted research once again confirms the need to include employee motivation as one of the organization's key competences in its competition strategy.
We hope that the collected articles, as well as the perspective created for their analysis, will allow you to develop an idea of the importance of an organization's competences. Acquiring a competitive advantage requires continuous development of the scope and structure of competences, as was presented in the first article on e-tools in businesses, or continuous stimulation to use them, as illustrated in the article on innovation. Continuous development of the organization's competences is necessary for developing business ventures. Initiatives in this area were presented in the third article highlighting the case of Nordic transformation wheels. Equally strongly emphasized are competences used to shape working conditions, stimulating employee attitudes and relationships, and developing the benefits of employee involvement in the company's development.
The editors thank all the authors who wanted to share the results of their research work in the Journal of Entrepreneurship, Management and Innovation (JEMI) and wish all readers the satisfaction of using time well spent reading the collected articles.